Frank Lampard shored up leaky Chelsea defence at expense of all attacking threat vs Man Utd.. he needs to find a balance

CHELSEA'S leaky defence has been the biggest criticism of Frank Lampard since he returned as boss.

They were the team that conceded the most amount of goals inside the top ten last season and, so far this this season, the trend has continued.

Concerns about Chelsea's defence under Lampard were raised once again and you could feel the pressure mounting on his shoulders.

Was it the personnel? Was it the formation? Or was it that lack of defensive coaching from Lampard himself?

Questions were asked and Lampard has answered.

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In the last two games, Lampard has set his team up in a much more defensive-minded structure and he has come away with two clean sheets.

After conceding three goals to Southampton the week before, Lampard needed to do something to shore up his defence.

Against Manchester United this evening, Chelsea were solid at the back once again, and Lampard will be very pleased with that aspect.

It is hugely important to have a tough and organised defence, one that is a struggle to break down.

Against Sevilla and United, Lampard has seen that with his Chelsea team.

However, while setting up a solid defensive unit, Lampard has sacrificed his attack and it is so important that his next move is to find a balance between the two.

Against United, Chelsea never looked like scoring.

Lampard set up with three centre-backs in a 3-4-3 formation and it never had a look of Chelsea scoring a goal, it only ever looked like a Chelsea team that could come away with a goalless draw at best.

United almost punished this late on, with Edouard Mendy having to make a couple of saves in the dying moments and this emphasises just how dangerous it is to try and play out for a draw.

Lampard needs to find and stick with one formation and work on playing as a team that can defend together and attack together.

Chelsea’s Premier League squad

Full squad, in number order…

Kepa Arrizabalaga
Antonio Rudiger
Marcos Alonso
Andreas Christensen – homegrown
Thiago Silva
N’Golo Kante
Tammy Abraham – homegrown
Christian Pulisic
Timo Werner
Willy Caballero
Fikayo Tomori – homegrown
Kurt Zouma
Edouard Mendy
Mateo Kovacic
Olivier Giroud
Mason Mount – under-21
Callum Hudson-Odoi – under-21
Ben Chilwell – homegrown
Hakim Ziyech
Billy Gilmour – under-21
Reece James – under-21
Cesar Azpilicueta
Kai Havertz – under-21
Emerson Palmieri
Petr Cech

Playing with three at the back just takes away a player from an attacking position and it is built to grind out results.

I don't believe this is the best formation for the players that Lampard has at his disposal.

They defended just as well with four at the back against Sevilla in the week, so I don't know why Lampard felt the need to switch it for United.

It is a fearful approach that is very risky and once again spells out the lack of confidence that Lampard has in his players and the formations he keeps swapping and changing with.

Yes, Lampard needed to strengthen his defence – but certainly not at the expense of his attack.

Chelsea and Lampard are in desperate need of balance, a regular system that is adaptive and a formation that he sticks with regularly.

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